Are some of these teams living on a prayer?

20:30, 19 Feb 2021

Nine games gone, and nine to go. The back half of the LEC 2021 Spring Split is sure to be closely fought. The top seven teams are divided by no more than three wins, meaning a top-four finish is well within reach for most of the pack. Unlike some of my crazier tier lists, this time around, I’m going to give you what you expect - the teams in order of how well I expect them to perform going forward.

First, let’s dive down to the bottom of the standings table, and look at the teams speedrunning “Tenth place Any%”.

10. Astralis

Currently placed ninth

Many were sad to see Origen’s brand disappear from our screens but were hopeful that new management and faces would bring success to the organisation. That hope seems to have fizzled out as Astralis sit three wins abreast of a playoffs spot and without their most experienced player right now. Felix “MagiFelix” Boström’s arrival netted Astralis a win against a confused Schalke side, but the red team were left seeing red after a bottom of the table clash against Misfits.

9. Team Vitality

Currently placed tenth

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Any French LEC fans will have to wait a little longer for their local team to secure a playoffs finish. Currently sitting 1-8, Team Vitality have shown little promise and bringing in Jus “Crownshot” Marusic hasn’t had the desired effect just yet (although I don’t think Excel and SK would have been my first choice teams to play against either). We may have to wait a little longer anyway, as Vitality will not face either Astralis or Misfits until the last week of the regular season.

8. Misfits Gaming

Currently placed eighth

Three weeks ago, I honestly believed that Misfits had found the perfect combination to challenge for playoffs, but since then, they have tumbled down the standings, going 1-5 in the last three weeks. A win last weekend against Astralis at least shows that they can still win games and may spur them on, and with superstar mid laner Vincent “Vetheo” Berrié on their side, they can surely make an effort to climb back up.

7. SK Gaming

Currently placed seventh

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A win against Fnatic on Friday night would have seen the LEC’s central pack pulled even more closely together, but SK capitulated against an unorthodox Riven pick. Erik “Treatz” Wessén and his teammates have the capacity to take down any of the four teams above them, but will have to take more than just the MAD Lions down if they want to reach playoffs.

6. Excel Esports

Currently placed tied fourth

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Another 1-1 week for Excel has left them in a comfortable fourth place, and they will undoubtedly be relishing the opportunity to improve on that against the MAD Lions and Astralis this week, both easily beatable teams with the resolve they showed in their first game against Fnatic. More on that in my previous article.

5. MAD Lions

Currently placed tied fourth

The big cat has been tamed - the team playing in gold currently sits 5-4 in the table after handing Schalke their second defeat of the week last Saturday. Although they haven’t shown the same table-topping form they had last summer, I have some faith at least that they can hold at least fifth, especially with their wins against Excel, Schalke, and Fnatic, all teams that are now sitting very close to them in the table. A repeat of that performance could see them climb as high as third, but it depends a great deal on how they play on the night against each of them.

CarzzyMadLionsjpg
Matyáš "Carzzy" Orság and the MAD Lions have had a quiet split so far, but will want to change that in the next four weeks

4. Fnatic

Currently placed third

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Stabbed in the back but still fighting on, Fnatic are now 6-1 in their last seven games. They are one of just two teams to take a game off G2, and I’m sure Rogue and Schalke are looking in the direction of the players in orange and black with fear. With teething issues resolved, it’s now on Fnatic to hold their form and keep their constant skirmishing viable as they look towards an upper bracket spot in playoffs.

3. FC Schalke 04 Esports

Currently placed tied fourth

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Nobody saw them coming, and then they took everything. Until their recent off week, Schalke looked like the third titan of the LEC, and remain the only team to beat both G2 and Rogue so far this season (unless you argue that G2 beats themselves). Losses to Astralis and MAD Lions have cast doubt over the team, but a second win over G2 on Saturday would silence all their critics.

1 and 2. G2 Esports and Rogue

Currently placed tied first

These two teams have been trading the top spot throughout the first four weeks, but following G2’s victory over Rogue in Week 4’s match of the week, it’s safe to say that G2 takes the cake in this power ranking. The worst-case scenario for both of these teams is if they let Fnatic or Schalke decide who reaches the top spot, as all four have shown their capacity to take games off each other, but these two have managed to be more consistent, at least over these first four weeks.

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Ready for weeks five to eight? Me too! The League of Legends European Championship continues on February 19, at 5pm GMT.

 

Images via Riot Games

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